Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla Motors, is a man with a vision. From pioneering the luxury car revolution to breaking ground on the forefront of space travel and hyperspeed transportation services throughout the world, he has already accomplished more in 43 years than many accomplish in a lifetime. On September 4, 2014, Musk announced that Nevada would be the new home of his $5 billion “gigafactory” responsible for producing high-tech batteries for his electric vehicles. The first (and largest) factory of its kind, its construction is estimated to bring tremendous economic growth to the Reno area, the factory's closest major city in Northern Nevada.
VAST HQ resides here in Reno, and now that the initial glamour and excitement over Tesla’s giga-announcement has settled, economists have analyzed the factory's expected economic impact on the Northern Nevada.
Tesla Gigafactory in Reno: What the Economists Say
Jobs: In the next five years, Tesla is expected to boost jobs in the Reno and surrounding economies. While the Reno/Tahoe area may already be well known among Tesla’s executives as a favorite for weekend getaways and vacation homes, an estimated 6,500 more employees (new and existing) will soon call Reno their home.
Economic Growth: Tesla’s new factory marks a major step in the right direction towards establishing Reno as the new high-tech city it’s striving to be. Over the next two decades, an estimated $100 billion economic impact is expected in Reno. According to the Governor’s Office for Economic Development, that’s about a 20% boost in 20 years.
Economic Diversification: Reno is no longer just the slot machine, shotgun-wedding town it used to be. With a revamped downtown area and Startup Row well underway, the Tesla move will only further Reno’s diverse economic makeup … which can only mean good things for the area.
In all reality, Tesla’s gigafactory has the potential to, and likely will, change the Reno economy forever. While some analysts say the economic impact might be overstated, there is no denying that big changes are on the horizon as Tesla’s gigafactory, and the other companies it attracts, set out to make Reno their new home.